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Category Academic
Type Policy
Approved by Senate, 30 March 2016
Date Policy Took Effect 30 March 2016
Last approved revision 25 October 2023
Sponsor Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic)
Responsible officer Senior Analyst, Research and Policy


To detail staff and student responsibilities and expectations as regards the provision of essential course and study information.


1.Responsibilities of staff

  1. Staff will provide, in writing, the following academic information about each taught paper to students:          Such information will be changed only in exceptional circumstances, in which case students shall be informed of the justification for the change and will be consulted unless this is clearly not practicable.  Written notification of any change will be provided via email or Blackboard (or other University-approved learning management systems); if there is provision for some negotiation of assessment tasks, the procedures for this negotiation will be clearly stated.
    1. paper objectives and intended learning outcomes
    2. workload expectations
    3. a statement of assessment requirements in the form of a list of items and their percentage weightings
    4. submission dates
    5. information on lectures, laboratories, tutorials and other scheduled teaching activities
    6. attendance or terms requirements (if appropriate), and
    7. reading requirements.
  2. Staff will provide, preferably in writing, relevant administrative information about each taught paper to students.  This shall normally include, as appropriate:
    1. a list of teaching and administrative staff associated with the paper
    2. contact details for matters related to the paper
    3. information on computing resources and other technologies used in the paper, such as Blackboard and other learning management systems
    4. details of available resources to support learning in the paper
    5. notification if lectures are to be recorded and made available and/or if students are permitted to make recordings of lectures for personal study
    6. information about University, departmental and Divisional support for Māori and Pacific students
    7. instructions on how to submit assignments, and
    8. details of processes to support students with disabilities, impairments or medical conditions, including processes for special consideration in internal assessment.
  3. To assist with student planning, information under clauses 1(a) and 1(b) should be provided as soon as is practicable, and no later than the first lecture of the paper or the end of the first week of the semester (whichever is earlier).
  4. Information provided under clauses 1(a) and (b) should be consistent with information provided for prospective students on the University website and/or in other University publications.  However, where exceptional circumstances dictate that changes from previously published information are necessary, staff should:
    1. highlight to students where paper requirements listed under clause 1(a) differ from previously published information
    2. highlight to students where administrative arrangements listed under clause 1(b) differ from previously published information, if such differences may have a significant impact on students, and
    3. ensure previously published information is updated as appropriate.
  5. Departments will provide students with information on the class representative system, including ensuring that the names and contact details of selected class representatives are readily accessible, for example through publication on webpages, Blackboard and/or departmental noticeboards.  The Summer School Office will assist with this process for Summer School.
  6. Where appropriate, staff are encouraged to make students aware of changes to paper arrangements based on feedback from current or previous students (e.g. in response to class representative feedback or course evaluation responses).
  7. Students will be made aware of the University's Academic Integrity Policy and acceptable academic practice through a clear statement in course outlines or other relevant departmental or University material.
  8. Arrangements shall be put in place to ensure that for each paper there are academic staff who are reasonably and regularly available to respond to and/or discuss matters which students may raise (e.g. through staff office hours).  These arrangements will be clearly communicated to students in course outlines and/or via Blackboard (or other University-approved learning management systems).
  9. Staff responsible for the supervision and/or the administration of graduate research students will make such students aware of the PhD Handbook or equivalent Research Master's information (as appropriate to their study), including the responsibilities of supervisors and candidates contained therein, and of relevant University policies relating to graduate research.

2.Responsibilities of students

  1. Students are responsible for making themselves aware of all University rules and regulations pertaining to their rights and responsibilities as students and to the degree in which they are enrolled.
  2. Students shall be deemed to have received any information:
    1. provided in scheduled classes, regardless of attendance
    2. sent to their student email address or
    3. made available via Blackboard or other University-approved learning management systems.
  3. Students are expected to be aware of all information related to a paper that is made available to them, and, in a timely manner, to raise with staff any questions or concerns relating to this information.
  4. Students are expected to be aware of, and to act in accordance with, the University's Academic Integrity Policy.
  5. Graduate research students are expected to be aware of the PhD Handbook or equivalent Research Master's information (as appropriate to their study), including the responsibilities of supervisors and candidates contained therein, and of relevant University policies relating to graduate research.

Related policies, procedures and forms

Contact for further information

If you have any queries regarding the content of this policy or need further clarification, contact:

Senior Analyst, Research and Policy

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